Financial Disclosures: None reported.
Funding/Support: This review was supported
by contract 290-02-0016 from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
(AHRQ), Task No. 4.
Role of the Sponsor/Disclaimer: This article
was developed through work conducted by the RTI International–University
of North Carolina Evidence-based Practice Center under AHRQ contract 290-97-0011.
The sponsoring agency provided advice and counsel on the design and conduct
of the evidence report on which this article is based, review of the draft
evidence report, acceptance and approval of the final evidence repot, and
review and approval of the draft manuscript of this article. The authors of
this article are solely responsible for its content, including any clinical
or treatment recommendations. No statement in this article should be construed
as an official position of the AHRQ or the US Department of Health and Human
Also Available: A more detailed systematic
evidence review of episiotomy in obstetrical care will be available at http://www.ahcpr.gov/clinic/epcix.htm.
Acknowledgment: We acknowledge the continuing
support of Kenneth Fink, MD, MGA, MPH, director of the AHRQ Evidence-Based
Practice Center (EPC) Program, and Marian James, PhD, the AHRQ task order
officer for this project. In addition, we thank the members of our technical
expert panel, who provided input and advice for the full evidence report on
which this article is based: Leah Albers, CNM, DrPH; Linda Brubaker, MD; Pierre
Buekens, MD, PhD, MPH; John O. L. DeLancey, MD; William Droegemueller, MD;
David A. Grimes, MD; and Dwight J. Rouse, MD, MSPH. The investigators deeply
appreciate the considerable support, commitment, and contributions of the
EPC team staff at Research Triangle Institute International and the University
of North Carolina (UNC), as well as the Center for Women’s Health Research
at UNC. From UNC, we thank Timothy S. Carey, MD, MPH; B. Lynn Whitener, PhD;
Leah Randolph, MA; Laura Morgan, MA, Richard MacLehose, MPH, and Anita Baldi,
BA. We also express our gratitude to Research Triangle Institute staff: Linda
Lux, MPA; Tammeka Swinson, BA; Loraine Monroe; and Debra Bost.